Saturday, May 9, 2015

UKRAINE v POLAND: Rugby Europe Champ., Div. 1B


Venue: Lublin

Referee: Tomas Tuma (Czech Republic)

BELGIUM 5 5 0 0 189 75 114 2 22
MOLDOVA 5 3 0 2 155 83 72 4 16
POLAND 4 2 0 2 86 126 -40 1 9
NETHERLANDS 3 1 0 2 47 42 5 2 6
UKRAINE 3 1 0 2 70 54 16 1 5
SWEDEN 4 0 0 4 35 202 -167 0 0

Neither of these teams looks like threatening Belgium’s grip on this competition. With Sweden holding the wooden spoon at present and not looking like letting it go, there’s not a lot at stake on this game. Both sides would need to improve their performances in order to threaten Moldova’s second place.

’The game is being held in the east of the country in Lublin near to the Ukrainian border in the newly built 15,000 seater football stadium. The game will be shown on the Polish satellite channel Polsat Sport News. The city produces good rugby teams at youth level but are currently in the second division. The last rugby international played there was 15 years ago and the union are hoping to break their previous attendance record of 6,500 (vs Belgium in Warsaw, 2009)’.

‘Recent games between these two countries have been close with Poland winning a violent encounter in Gdynia 13-12 in 2013 with the Ukraine winning 29:28 in Lviv a year later.

Poland seem to have long abandoned their old coach Putra's experiment of bringing in French and British players of Polish origin for a mainly Polish born and based squad, with a few flying in from France and Scotland. They have recently returned from tour to South Africa and will be aided in their preparation by Blikkies Gronewald who is one of the Blue Bulls coaches. Results for Poland have not been great of late with a win over bottom of the group Sweden and by one point over the Netherlands. They also shipped a lot of points against Moldova and Belgium so this could almost be seen as a must win game for the Poles.

As a small aside, the old coach (Putra) preference for using foreign born or based players helped get Poland up to 25 in the world rankings. He moved on after disagreements with the union and now coaches the Czech team with a simmered down version of the same strategy. The Czechs, who are a division below Poland, are currently ranked at 34 in the world, while Poland are at 35.

The Ukrainian team seem to have a lot a familiar names in the likes of Lomakin, Garkavyy, Chaika, Radchuk etc... several of whom have played in the Polish domestic final game and even won the Championship there so must feel confident, however Poland traditionally play much better at home so this might be another close one.’

‘Poulter’ at

Last Five Encounters
26.04.2014 Ukraine 29-28 in Lvov (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 1B)
30.03.2013 Poland 13-12 in Gdansk (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 1B)
12.09.2009 Ukraine 19-12 in Kiev (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 2A)
04.10.2008 Ukraine 13-12 in Lotz ((WCQ Europe R4; ENC 2A)
25.10.2003 Ukraine 24-13 in Lotz (ENC 2A)

Ukraine Last Five P 5, W 2, L 3
15.11.2014 v Belgium L 10-25 in Irpin (REC 1B)
08.11.2014 v Moldova L 15-29 in Chisinau (REC 1B)
18.10.2014 v Sweden W 45-0 in Enkoping (REC 1B)
26.04.2014 v Poland W 29-28 in Lvov (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 1B)
12.04.2014 v Moldova L 8-28 in Chisinau (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 1B)

Poland Last Five P 5, W 2, L 3
18.04.2015 v Belgium L 23-53 in Brussels (REC 1B)
15.11.2014 v Moldova L 25-48 in Chisinau (REC 1B)
18.10.2014 v Netherlands W 9-8 in Warsaw (REC 1B)
06.09.2014 v Sweden W 29-17 in Warsaw (REC 1B)
26.04.2014 v Ukraine L 28-29 in Lvov (WCQ Europe R4; ENC 1B)

GWC Rugby Rankings
Europe Table: Ukraine 18th, Poland 19th

World Rugby Ranking Points
Ukraine 52.33, Poland 51.00

Prediction: Ukraine by 5 points. Score 26-21



Poland Squad

Kamil Bobryk - CS Vienne (France)
Radosław Bysewski - Arka Gdynia
Craig Bachurzewski - Biggar RFC (Scotland)
Adrian Chróściel - Pogoń Siedlce
Paweł Grabski - Budowlani Łódź SA
Grzegorz Buczek - Lechia Gdańsk
Piotr Zeszutek - Ogniwo Sopot
Karol Perzak - Arka Gdynia
Aleksander Nowicki - AS Macon Rugby (France)
Marek Płonka - Lechia Gdańsk
Mateusz Bartoszek - Glasgow Hawks (Scotland)
Paweł Dąbrowski - Arka Gdynia
Stanisław Powała-Niedźwiecki - Budowlani Lublin

Dawid Banaszek - Arka Gdynia
Łukasz Szostek - Arka Gdynia
Rafał Janeczko - Lechia Gdańsk
Szymon Sirocki - Arka Gdynia
Dawid Popławski - FCTT Toulouse (France)
Patryk Reksulak - Budowlani Łódź SA
Tomasz Gasik - Orkan Sochaczew
Rafał Szrajber - Arka Gdynia
Piotr Psuj - Pogoń Siedlce
Tomasz Rokicki - Lechia Gdańsk
Radosław Rakowski - Arka Gdynia
Dawid Plichta - Orkan Sochaczew
Mateusz Pawłowski - Orkan Sochaczew

Daniel Bartkowiak - Arka Gdynia
Cyprian Majcher - Budowlani Łódź SA
Mariusz Wilczuk - Lechia Gdańsk

Thanks to ‘Polter’ at


Ukraine Squad

Forwards: Sergei Suhih, Nikolai Kirsanov (captain), Konstantin Hurylov Alexander Tsapenko Alexander Lomakin, Valentine Litvinenko (all "Olympus", Kharkiv), Eugene Seagull Vitaliy Kramarenko, Ruslan Radchuk, Edward Vertyletskyy (all "CREDO-1963" Odessa), Nicholas Oleksandryuk ("Mace", Taganrog), Vladislav Demetskyy, Vyacheslav Demyanchuk (both "Khmelnitsky" Khmelnytsky), Wladyslaw Grabowski ("Arka Gdynia", Poland).

Midfielders: Maxim Kravchenko, Sergei Church (both "Olympus", Kharkiv), Sergei Yanchiy ("Mace", Taganrog).

Backs: Vyacheslav Ponomarenko, Harkavyy Sergey, Oleg Kosarev Maxim Churayev Vladimir Voytov (all "Olympus", Kharkov), Denis Masyukov Paul Masyukov, Eugene Zalewski, Vitaly Krasnodemskyy (all "CREDO-1963", Odessa).

Thanks to ‘Polter’ at

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